Zhuge Liang vs. Sima Yi

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Unread postby DarkAnthem » Wed Jan 22, 2003 9:00 pm

Here’s a link for the translated SGZ bio for Kong Ming, it also has Cao Cao’s. These translations don’t include the Pei commentaries though, so you wont find the pei commentary about Meng Huo being captured seven times based on HJCQ.

http://www.users.bigpond.com/acesc/index.htm

Great Deer wrote:Then I'm afriad you maybe wrong here. Han Jin Chu Qiu and Jin Shu contain records of their engagements at Qi Shan during Kongming's 4th expedition. I pose this question because I want to see the different interpretations by people who are aware of that battle.


The HJCQ version has it as Sima Yi left Yao, Ling with 4000 troops to defend Shang Gui, and led the rest west to help out in Qi Shan. Kong Ming separated his forces to defeated Guo Huai and Fei Yao, and encountered Sima Yi near the east of Shang Gui and defeated Sima Yi there. Afterwards Sima Yi was forced to hide in his camps until Kong Ming retreats.

I looked at Sima Yi’s Jin Shu bio yesterday, and this is how it has it:

Sima Yi Jin Shu bio wrote wrote:亮闻大军且至,乃自帅众将芟上邽之麦。诸将皆惧,帝曰:“亮虑多决少,必安营自固,然后芟麦。吾得二日兼行足矣。”于是卷甲晨夜赴之。亮望尘而遁。帝曰:“吾倍道疲劳,此晓兵者之所贪也。亮不敢据渭水,此易与耳。”进次汉阳,与亮相遇,帝列阵以待之。使将牛金轻骑饵之,兵才接而亮退,追至祁山。亮屯卤城,据南北二山,断水为重围。帝攻拔其围,亮宵遁。追击,破之,俘斩万计。天子使使者劳军,增封邑。


It basically mentions Kong Ming leading his men near Shang Gui to cut grain. Sima Yi’s forces marches towards Han Yang, meets with Kong Ming’s forces and secures/lines up his troops to fight against Kong Ming. Niu Jin led troops to lure Kong Ming; retreated as the troops engaged with Kong Ming, and was pursued to Qi Shan. Kong Ming stationed at Lu castle, taking the south and west mountains, and cuts off the water supplies and surrounds Niu Jin. Sima Yi attacked Kong Ming’s forces and defeated them.

The two versions are quite different, in one where Kong Ming was winning all the way while Sima Yi won the battle in the Jin Shu version. I’m not sure which one to believe more, but I find something contradicting to itself in the Jin Shu version. Here’s a quote from Jin Shu for the fifth campaign:

Sima Yi Jin Shu bio wrote wrote:亮数挑战,帝不出,因遗帝巾帼妇人之饰。帝怒,表请决战,天子不许,乃遣骨鲠臣卫尉辛毗杖节为军师以制之。


Translates to: Kong Ming tried to lure Sima Yi out many times, and failed. Kong Ming sent women jewelry to Sima Yi because of him hiding in the camp all the time. Sima Yi was enraged and asked Cao Rui if he was allowed to go out of his camps and face Kong Ming. Cao Rui didn’t allow it and sent Xin Pi to inform Sima Yi to stay in his camps.

In the Jin Shu bio, it appears that Sima Yi wasn’t losing majorly in any of the battles, even in the fifth campaign, it doesn’t mention any engagements Sima Yi and Kong Ming had in battle where Sima Yi was defeated. So why did Cao Rui insist on Sima Yi to hide in his camps and not face Kong Ming? I wouldn’t think the emperor would insist on such a thing unless Sima Yi was proven to not be able to defeat Kong Ming in battle prior to that, while in the forth and fifth campaign described in the Jin Shu bio it doesn’t appear that Sima Yi was losing that much during his actual engagements with Kong Ming.

I would the HJCQ version would be biased towards Kong Ming somewhat, since most of the fabrications of Kong Ming’s campaigns seem to be based on HJCQ. But Jin Shu may also be somewhat biased towards Sima Yi, as most of the advice Sima Yi received from other officers (Zhang He, Guo Huai), according to Jin Shu, he seemed to have came up with the advice himself, while in other records (HJCQ, Wei Lue) it wasn’t so. I suppose I should disregard HJCQ in this case (since it might be biased against Sima Yi), and I’m not sure how reliable Wei Lue is.

I wouldn’t really take either versions for its word since they are contradicting, but since according to Jin Shu itself Sima Yi hid in his camps in the fifth campaign and Cao Rui also wanted him to do so, it implies there were defeats Sima Yi suffered.
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Unread postby Ender » Wed Jan 22, 2003 11:33 pm

Off topic here but is there a thread that tells where you can find more SGZ bio's. There are some here but I here of different sites and such. I've been on this forum and have debated with a limited amount of knowledge against others who have much more knowledge. Though I don't know alot I think I've done O.K against others, Wang Zijun should know. :D Just curious if there's a thread.

[edit]-no need to respond, found it.
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Thu Jan 23, 2003 3:27 am

Wang Zijun wrote:Just because Sun Tzu's Art of war has different views to that of mine, does that mean I should change my views in his favour? Not everyone is expected to agree with his view of war Chris.

Actually, my point was that, the Art of War has many applications. A person who understand such doctrines of war reasonably should be able to apply it competently not only in the military context but in other fields as well.

Anyway, like I mentioned in my previous post, the situation at the city of Xin where Meng Da was formenting a rebellion was certainly a complex one (even in military context). This is especially so if you take into considerations other factors such as political and diplomatic ones. As such, the decisive and swift manner in which Sima Yi resolved the crisis showed clearly that he was adept not only in formulating good military strategies but he was able to apply it to the political and diplomatic arenas as well.
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Unread postby Mega Zarak » Thu Jan 23, 2003 4:02 am

DarkAnthem wrote:Translates to: Kong Ming tried to lure Sima Yi out many times, and failed. Kong Ming sent women jewelry to Sima Yi because of him hiding in the camp all the time. Sima Yi was enraged and asked Cao Rui if he was allowed to go out of his camps and face Kong Ming. Cao Rui didn’t allow it and sent Xin Pi to inform Sima Yi to stay in his camps.

In the Jin Shu bio, it appears that Sima Yi wasn’t losing majorly in any of the battles, even in the fifth campaign, it doesn’t mention any engagements Sima Yi and Kong Ming had in battle where Sima Yi was defeated. So why did Cao Rui insist on Sima Yi to hide in his camps and not face Kong Ming? I wouldn’t think the emperor would insist on such a thing unless Sima Yi was proven to not be able to defeat Kong Ming in battle prior to that, while in the forth and fifth campaign described in the Jin Shu bio it doesn’t appear that Sima Yi was losing that much during his actual engagements with Kong Ming.


Some possible reasons which I can think of:

i) In the 9th month of 233 A.D., according to Cao Rui's biography, there were some rebellions by the Huns and Sima Yi was involved in pacifying them. Hence, some of the western troops might have already been heavily involved in fighting.

ii) In spring 234 A.D., Zhuge Liang led some 100,000 soldiers in his 5th (and last) expedition. This number is certainly not a small one according to the standards of those days.

iii) Although Zhuge Liang did not beat Sima Yi decisively (which means assuming Han Jin Chun Qiu's account is not reliable), Zhuge Liang's army was not defeated decisively too. This shows that Zhuge Liang was capable enough to be able to secure a stalemate with Wei in all his expeditions. It doesn't matter whether Wei was more resourceful or not but a stalemate would imply the existence of uncertainties. Hence, Cao Rui might not want to take unnecessary risks.

iv) The fact that Zhuge Liang came with a large army and issued challenges and insults showed that he was prepared. In a previous instance, Zhang He and Wang Shuang were killed when they gave battle rashly. Hence, if Sima Yi was indeed provoked into battle (according to Wei Shi Chun Qiu with ref. to Cao Rui's SGZ bio and Han Jin Chun Qiu with ref. to Zhuge Liang's SGZ bio), then there were chances that he would be defeated. Hence, Sima Yi was restrained by the court order.

Anyway, according to Han Jin Chun Qiu, Zhuge Liang told Jiang Wei that Sima Yi's army was actually not prepared for battle but they pretended to be so but letting themselves be restrained by the court order. He said that a general in the field could make independent decisions despite orders from the court and the fact that they didn't show that they're not ready. It's really a clever way of putting things by Xi Zuo Chi! :D

Han Jin Chun Qiu, with ref. to Zhuge Liang's SGZ biography wrote:汉晋春秋曰:亮自至,数挑战。宣王亦表固请战。使卫尉辛毗持节以制之。姜维谓亮曰:“辛佐治仗节而到,贼不复出矣。”亮曰:“彼本无战情,所以固请战者,以示武於其众耳。将在军,君命有所不受,苟能制吾,岂千里而请战邪!”
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Unread postby Mengdez New Book » Fri Jan 24, 2003 3:03 am

Wang Zijun wrote:Then surely if they knew where to hide and where to put ambushes, they would of dealt the Shu-Han forces some miner defeats, can you think of any?


Come on, there is the weakness of the history, how come they wrote down everything that happen? As you can see the women in Sanguo almost 'no history'.
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Unread postby Sam » Fri Jan 24, 2003 4:29 pm

Mengdez New Book wrote:Come on, there is the weakness of the history, how come they wrote down everything that happen? As you can see the women in Sanguo almost 'no history'.


That is far from the point. If there are absolutely no historical records stating that the nanman dealt the Shu-Han forces some miner defeats due to their knowledge of the terrain, or even that they knew the terrain better then that of the Shu-Han forces, you can't argue that they did as you have no proof to back up your statement.
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Unread postby DarkAnthem » Fri Jan 24, 2003 6:28 pm

Great Deer wrote:Some possible reasons which I can think of:

i) In the 9th month of 233 A.D., according to Cao Rui's biography, there were some rebellions by the Huns and Sima Yi was involved in pacifying them. Hence, some of the western troops might have already been heavily involved in fighting.


According to Cao Rui’s bio Sima Yi sent Hu Zun to quell the rebellions and succeeded. Kong Ming’s fifth campaign was in the Spring (2nd month) of 234 A.D., which was about half an year apart. As it wasn’t indicated that the Huns rebellion caused any serious damage, I would imagine it wouldn’t affect a defensive campaign about half an year later?

ii) In spring 234 A.D., Zhuge Liang led some 100,000 soldiers in his 5th (and last) expedition. This number is certainly not a small one according to the standards of those days.


Three months after Kong Ming led his troops to Qi Shan, Wu also sent 100,000 soldiers to attack He Fei and sent Lu Xun and Zhuge Jin with about 10,000 soldiers to attack Jiang Xia. That’s when Cao Rui ordered Sima Yi to stay in his camps and not go face to face with Kong Ming. Cao Rui and Man Chong didn’t face Wu by hiding in their camps, so I wouldn’t think they were threatened by the 100,000 number.

I suppose it’s possible that Cao Rui wanted Sima Yi to stay put until Wu was defeated. But after Wu was defeated, Cao Rui didn’t send any kind of reinforcement to Sima Yi, indicating he thought Sima Yi had enough troops to go against Kong Ming? And even after Wu was defeated, Cao Rui still continued to insist on Sima Yi hiding in his camps.

iii) Although Zhuge Liang did not beat Sima Yi decisively (which means assuming Han Jin Chun Qiu's account is not reliable), Zhuge Liang's army was not defeated decisively too. This shows that Zhuge Liang was capable enough to be able to secure a stalemate with Wei in all his expeditions. It doesn't matter whether Wei was more resourceful or not but a stalemate would imply the existence of uncertainties. Hence, Cao Rui might not want to take unnecessary risks.

iv) The fact that Zhuge Liang came with a large army and issued challenges and insults showed that he was prepared. In a previous instance, Zhang He and Wang Shuang were killed when they gave battle rashly. Hence, if Sima Yi was indeed provoked into battle (according to Wei Shi Chun Qiu with ref. to Cao Rui's SGZ bio and Han Jin Chun Qiu with ref. to Zhuge Liang's SGZ bio), then there were chances that he would be defeated. Hence, Sima Yi was restrained by the court order.


If Sima Yi was provoked into battle, there’s a big chance that he would have fallen into Kong Ming’s traps. But if he was to face Kong Ming normally without any rash actions, there’s not much of any reason he would definitely have the down side, unless he suffered some kind of a minor or major defeat before. But according to his Jin Shu bio, he appeared to be quite successful in his previous defense against Kong Ming not hiding in his camps.

Anyway, according to Han Jin Chun Qiu, Zhuge Liang told Jiang Wei that Sima Yi's army was actually not prepared for battle but they pretended to be so but letting themselves be restrained by the court order. He said that a general in the field could make independent decisions despite orders from the court and the fact that they didn't show that they're not ready. It's really a clever way of putting things by Xi Zuo Chi! :D


If by your argument that Sima Yi’s forces has not completely recovered from the Huns rebellion and were not prepared for Kong Ming’s mass amount of troops, doesn’t that imply that he wasn’t actually prepared for battle? :wink:
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Unread postby Shadowlink » Thu Feb 06, 2003 7:48 pm

Alot for history here but Zhugeliang died and Jiang wei did not strand a chance so end for story now.
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Re: Zhugeliang Vs. Sima Yi

Unread postby Iznoach, Legendary Dragon » Fri Feb 14, 2003 9:34 am

This topic has gotten quite a bit off...topic, so here's the subject of it again. If I was to go through here and delete all the irrelavant posts, nobody'd have any posts left. Please get back on topic. Thank you.

Zhugeliang wrote:who do u think is smarter I think Zhugeliang is because he almost burn Sima Yi and his sons it was because Zhugeliang was not as evil as Sima Yi so Sima Yi end up ruling china.
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Unread postby Lady Zhuge » Sun Mar 09, 2003 7:40 pm

TheGreatNads wrote:A lot of people were helping, but that doesn't take away from there faults. If Zhuge would of trusted people better and listened to other peoples suggestions, he could of done great things. But instead he ruined most of Shu's chance at ever accomplishing much. Anyway I like destroying overated persons(Especially when they're people who have caused the death of innocent and talented generals like Wei Yan!) name. And Zhuge Liang is overated, so I'll destroy away!


Zhuge Liang did listen to people's suggestions when they were practical and made sense. Wasn't Ma Su the one who advised him on trying to win over Meng Huo's heart? How did Zhuge Liang ruin any chance of Shu's accomplishing much? He didn't deplete resources if that's what you think, otherwise Shu wouldn't have lasted much longer after his death. Without him, there would not have been a Shu and he kept Shu going after Liu Bei's death. ZL did not cause Wei Yan's death; the latter's death was due mostly to his political rivalry with Yang Yi. Wei Yan was killed AFTER Zhuge Liang died, so he could not have been directly responsible. Yes, Zhuge Liang was overly embellished in SGYY, but how many of the great ones weren't? You can try to destroy, but that won't take away from ZL's brilliance and how crucial he was to Shu's survival. It's unfair of you to not give him any credit.
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